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Letter: Press editorial misses point of community dog park

I attended the Jan. 31 Park and Rec meeting where I spoke in favor of Dickinson building a dog park. I was overwhelmed with the emotions on both sides. I do believe those against the dog park have been asking the right questions...what about noise from barking...mess from feces...and loss of park area for children? All this trouble for a "special interest" group?

Let us look at the facts:

Special interest?

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association's Web page (, 37.2 percent of American households own dogs. Each of these dog-owning households have 1.7 dogs.

So how does this relate to Dickinson? I called City Hall and they did not have accurate household numbers for Dickinson. The closest number was 5,450 single family homes. This number does not include multi-family units, so this number is low.

Doing the math...

5,450 X .372=2,027 Dickinson households that own dogs.

2,027 X 1.7=3,446 dogs in the Dickinson city limits.

The facts clearly state that over a third of the community of Dickinson has use for a dog park...hardly a "special interest!"


Dogs nuisance bark when their basic mental and physical needs are not met. Dogs bark when they are lonely, bored, lack socialization or lack exercise. The dog park is an antidote to dog barking! Dogs don't bark when they are running, playing with toys, smelling and enjoying the day. Many people at the park meeting validated this truth. Dog parks are no more noisy than any other public park. Just visit one!

One more note, the dog park would be placed 300 feet from the nearest property line in the proposal.

Feces facts:

The park plan does include covered garbage containers and bags for picking up dog feces. I don't want my dog playing in your dog's poo! This is a great motivator...peer pressure poop collecting! Same concept as no peeing in the public pool!

Loss of park area for children?

The proposed plans, if approved, would add a new basketball court and all other amenities would remain.

Just a side note to The Dickinson Press Editorial Board, if we cut out all the community programs that were "not a necessity" we would not have a community center, softball diamonds, golf course, etc.

Nina Kadrmas, Dickinson